- Edward Aschoff, ESPN Staff Writer
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Vanderbilt’s offensive line entered the spring without a lot of running parts. Unfortunately for the Commodores, spring ended that way, as well.
With Ryan Seymour and Chase White rehabbing injuries, the Commodores started spring practices with just nine healthy bodies up front. Tuesday, coach James Franklin said that as the injuries piled up, his team went about most of spring with just seven healthy offensive linemen.
That meant both good and bad things for Vanderbilt.
For starters, it showed the lack of depth at one of the most important positions on the field. It meant that the Commodores rarely got through practices with a full offensive line taking reps.
But the positive was that Franklin and the offense found some new players to rely on, whether they were heading toward being starters or were legitimate backups.
“They got a chance to really develop, taking reps with the No. 1s, competing at a very, very high level,” Franklin said during Tuesday’s SEC coaches teleconference.
Vanderbilt might be down bodies on the offensive line heading into the offseason, but good news is coming. Franklin expects Seymour, White and other linemen who were banged up this spring to be back at full health this fall. Vanderbilt also signed six offensive linemen in this year’s recruiting class, giving the Commodores some real depth to work with this fall.
Getting all those players on the field at the same time is very important to Franklin and Vanderbilt.
“Then we have a chance to start building something at that position,” Franklin said.